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Chinese gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate could drop to 2% in the first quarter from the fourth quarter’s 6% if the coronavirus profile was similar to the SARS
experience, according to Westpac’s economics team.

That would push the full-year growth rate down to 5.5%, below the bank’s current 5.8% forecast.

If China takes six months to contain the virus, its growth rate could slide to near 5%, in which case, officials may deliver stimulus to counter the slowdown, Westpac
said, while adding further that the growth of 5.3% for 2020 was the most likely scenario.